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You are here: Home EMUBusiness_pastwires 'Real' world should wake up to the euro - EMUbusiness - Issue 28

'Real' world should wake up to the euro - EMUbusiness - Issue 28

02 October 2001, 19:55 CET


EMUbusiness - Issue 28
3 October 2001
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EMUbusiness top stories
=======================
1. Belgium planning compulsory dual price display
2. No room for complacency about large companies' euro preparations
3. In search of local authority best practice
4. Price vigilance needed
5. Stability Pact should be able to withstand terror attack


Publisher's Note
================
With fewer than 100 days to go before the 'real' euro is
introduced, the 'real' world should be starting to pay attention to the euro. One does not, however, get that feeling. The advertising campaigns are under way, but - say those who help, for example, the elderly and small shopkeepers - they are often couched in language which is too opaque for these groups. The evidence is anecdotal but strong that lack of preparation among SMEs is in part due to the fact that they do not know where to turn for straightforward advice. One reason is certainly that central banks are not the natural first port of call for these businesses. Just as communications do not necessarily come naturally to central banks. The basics are not difficult to grasp, but the messages must get through. One of the most alarming statistics I have seen in recent days is the survey which shows that between 4.8% and 31.4% of the population of the euro-area (in France and Ireland respectively) believe that there will never come a time when they can no longer pay in national currency. Clearly, there is a lot of spadework still to do.

Regards,
Marion Bywater
Publisher, EMUbusiness
mailto:mbywater@eubusiness.com

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1. Belgium planning compulsory dual price display
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Belgium is likely to make dual price display compulsory from December 15, 2001, to February 28, 2002, i.e. the last day of Belgium's dual circulation period. The details, and possible exceptions to the rule, have yet to be worked out. Shortly following Picque's announcement, Belgian retailing organisation Fedis announced it believes the Minister has left it too late to make this measure workable. It also believe it will be counter-productive.
Full story: Story 59426


2. No room for complacency about large companies' euro
preparations
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Many companies, even larger ones, are still failing to
appreciate the need to prepare their market, their staff and their pensioners for the euro a new survey by the European Accountants' Federation (FEE) suggests. Even though the survey results are likely to be biased towards euro-aware companies because respondents either receive this newsletter or are registered on the FEE website, they are still behind in some key issues.
Full story: Story 59427


3. In search of local authority best practice
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Regional or local authorities which believe their preparation for the euro has been exemplary have until mid-October to put forward their names for inclusion in a compilation of best practice. The final study on best practice will be submitted to the EU's Committee of the Regions in early December.
Full story: Story 59428


4. Price vigilance needed
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Governments need to do more to ensure that the euro does not lead to higher prices, it was agreed at the Internal Market Council in Brussels on September 27. There is a widespread conviction among euro-area governments that the euro is being blamed for price increases which are in fact justified on other counts, but there is also widespread agreement that more needs to be done to get this message across.
Full story: Story 59429


5. Stability pact should be able to withstand terror attack
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The overflow impact on euro-area budget deficits of the terror attacks in the United States will be a blow to budgetary consolidation in the euro area, but the Stability and Growth Pact should be able to take the strain, according to Germany's Hypovereinsbank.
Full story: Story 59430

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These articles are provided by Euro-impact. Euro-impact is a monthly newsletter on the regulatory, practical and strategic impacts of the euro for companies. Articles may be reproduced with acknowledgement of the source and Euro-impact. Every reasonable effort has been made to ensure the information is correct at the time of writing. Euro-impact.com
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Coming in the October 2001 issue of Euro-impact: Still major pockets of consumer ignorance; Austrians would feel happier with more price monitoring; Germans still have very mixed feelings about euro; French insurers offer cover against conversion errors; the reality of the counterfeiting risk; Belgian post office sells euro by mistake and five euro note turns up in Dutch shop.
The latest issue of the monthly newsletter on the impact of the euro can now be downloaded for GBP 55 + VAT:
Story 57600 .
For subscription information
Euroimpact on EUbusiness .
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Other stories on EUbusiness in September
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EU jobless figures stay stable
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Euro-zone seasonally-adjusted unemployment was unchanged at 8.3% in August 2001 compared to July, according to latest data released by Eurostat. The jobless figure was 8.7% one year ago. Unemployment in the whole EU15 was also unchanged at 7.6% in August unchanged compared to July. The figure for August 2000 was 8.1%.
Full story: Story 59348


ECB, Germany see bright economic future in Europe
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The European Central Bank and Germany on Monday fired a double-barrelled shot of optimism at the European economy, aiming to ward off a slump in confidence after last month's terrorist attacks in the United States. Comments by ECB Vice President Christian Noyer and German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder echoed a determined drive by many top European officials to counter the most-feared effect of the September 11 attacks: weakness in consumer confidence.
Full story: Story 59239


Euro-zone shows trade surplus of 7.8 bln euros in July: Eurostat
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The 12-nation euro zone recorded an estimated trade surplus with the rest of the world of EUR 7.8 billion last July from a surplus of EUR 5.5bn in July 2000, Eurostat said on Thursday. By contrast, the full EU15 recorded an estimated deficit of EUR 1.6bn, compared with a deficit of EUR 5.0bn in July 2000.
Full story: Story 59013


Euro-zone M3 growth picks up again, but won't dash hopes for rate cut
--------------------------------------------------------
Growth in the euro zone's money supply, which the European
Central Bank views as a key indicator of future inflation,
accelerated again in August, data published last Thursday
showed. But analysts said the sharper-than-expected pick-up in money supply growth would not necessarily reduce the chances of a rate cut because the data were distorted by a number of special factors.
Full story: Story 59014


1.4% fall in euro-zone industrial production
--------------------------------------------
Seasonally adjusted industrial production fell by 1.4% in the euro-zone in July 2001 compared to one month earlier, reports Eurostat. This latest decrease follows an increase of 0.9% in June and a fall of 0.3% in May. Meanwhile, production in the EU15 decreased by 1.3% in July, after a gain of 0.7% in June and a decrease of 0.4% in May.
Full story: Story 58676


Euro zone current account deficit widens in July
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The euro zone's current account deficit rose to EUR 4.1 billion in July, a huge jump from the EUR 2.5 billion shortfall recorded one year earlier, according to latest data from the European Central Bank.
Full story: Story 58674


99 days to E Day: 'Euro message is getting through' - survey
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Only 8% of euro-zone citizens do not know the exact date of
introduction of euro banknotes and coins, according to the
latest Eurobarometer survey carried out this month for the
Commission. With just 99 days left before 'E Day', the survey shows signs that the message is finally getting through to the public.
Full story: Story 58667


More and more Europeans are handing in hoards of notes and coins
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More and more people in Europe are emptying their piggy-banks and handing in their hoards of national banknotes and coins ahead of the launch of euro coins and notes next year, the European Central Bank has said. In its September monthly Bulletin published Thursday, the bank noted that cash in circulation in the 12-country euro area had declined almost continuously since November, with the latest figures showing a year-on-year decline of 6.4 percent in July.
Full story: Story 58404


One in five SMEs won't be ready for the euro, survey finds
----------------------------------------------------------
One in five smaller businesses (SMEs) will not be ready for the euro on 1 January 2002, according to a survey for the European Commission. Many SMEs will have their systems converted for the euro only after the changeover: 15% will still be unable to deal with invoicing in euros, and 23% with other operations, the poll found.
Full story: Story 58378


Banks warned again about fees for cross-border transfer
-------------------------------------------------------
Banks are still overcharging for cross-border transfers, the Commission warned on 20 September. It plans to force banks to charge the same as for domestic payments. Banks charged customers an average of 24 euros for moving 100 euros to a bank in another EU country, a survey of 1,480 transfers found. The most expensive sending countries were Greece, Ireland and Italy; the costliest, from Greece to Denmark, cost 60 euros.
Full story: Story 58397

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This newsletter is produced in association with FEE, the
Federation des Experts Comptables Europeens. FEE is the
representative organisation for the accountancy profession in Europe. It is a "non profit" organisation which groups together 38 professional bodies from 26 countries, including all 15 Member States of the European Union and the 3 main member countries of EFTA.
The FEE Euro Information Service is at: FEE site
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Internet Monitor
================

ECB statement on terrorism
--------------------------
Public statement by the European Central Bank on its support for measures to prevent the use of the financial system in the funding of terrorist activities.
European Cental Bank


A return to the convertibility principle?
-----------------------------------------
The September issue of Economic Papers (No. 159) explores the long-standing relationship between monetary and fiscal policies.
Europa


Countdown to the euro
---------------------
More information on how to prepare for the euro changeover,
including background info on Economic and Monetary Union, a
glossary and questions & answers.
Europa


EMU diary
---------
16 October, ECOFIN Council, Luxembourg
19 October, Informal European Council, Ghent
6 November, ECOFIN Council, Brussels
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